Donald Trump Called Deaf Actress Marlee Matlin ‘Retarded,’ ‘Apprentice’ Staffers Say

Tony Maglio
The Wrap
Donald Trump Called Deaf Actress Marlee Matlin ‘Retarded,’ ‘Apprentice’ Staffers Say

“Celebrity Apprentice” staffers say Donald Trump made sexual comments to Academy Award winner Marlee Matlin and called the deaf actress “retarded” when she competed on the show, the Daily Beast reports.

The Beast, citing three longtime staffers, said Trump would disrespect the actress both to her face and behind her back, treating her as if she were mentally disabled.

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During tapings of the reality series, Trump would often scribble down notes from his boardroom seat, and once wrote, “Marlee, is she retarded??,” according to a staffer.

During production breaks, when Trump often remained on mic, he would make fun of her voice, the Beast said. All of the site’s sources spoke on condition of anonymity because of non-disclosure agreements, the site said.

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“It actually sounded a lot like what he did [to] the New York Times guy,” another person told the Beast. “Like, to make it seem like she was mentally not there? [It] sounded like he got a real kick out of it. It was really upsetting.”

Richard Hatch, a fellow former “Celebrity Apprentice” contestant, told People magazine on Wednesday that Trump hit on Matlin and Lisa Rinna on the set of the NBC show.

Trump and Matlin declined to comment for the Beast story.

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